Sebastian Lletget left the L.A. Galaxy to join the New England Revolution and said, “I want to be on a team that wins and has the ability to win.”
Let that sink in for a minute.
Lletget spoke to the media for the first time on Dec. 16, expressing excitement for the challenge ahead. He complimented the Revs’ 2021 season, saying, “There were a lot of good teams out there last year, but I think New England exceeded everybody’s expectations. It was amazing to watch.”
Of course, the Revs fell short of their ultimate goal of winning the MLS Cup, though they did lift the Supporters’ Shield and set a new single-season points record. Lletget and the Revs will now resume the hunt for the league’s top prize.
This is different from recent years with the Galaxy, who failed to make the playoffs three of the past four years.
“Last year was definitely a disappointment for the [Galaxy] and if I’m honest, it’s been disappointing for a couple years now,” Lletget said. “I take my full responsibility in my part of that.”
The USMNT player believes that he will find more success in New England and that’s a big shift for a club who struggled between 2015 and 2018.
Of course, this is the type of thing that a player coming to a new club is likely to say. Omar Gonzalez, who’s coming to the Revs from Toronto FC, told media on Dec. 22, “We want to win MLS Cup. We want to win Champions League.”
Still, Lletget’s comments highlight the growth the club. They now have a state-of-the-art training facility, a historically-successful coach, a second team that’s producing, a well-rounded roster, and three Designated Players.
This all equates to the club being among the league elite. It’s a bit hard to believe for some, as the Revs have been consistently looked down upon by others. Grant Wahl’s Ambition Rankings is one measuring stick to look at.
So Lletget’s comments mean something. It’s big that he was “super excited” to come to the Revolution. I like that he wants to reunite with Bruce Arena and his “special sauce.” More than anything, we need to acknowledge that he said, “I want to win. I haven’t been able to do that at the Galaxy for one reason or another, but I think this is going to be the challenge that I’m looking for.”
Gonzalez offered similar comments in his introductory press conference, saying, “Since I’ve been in the league, maybe there has been this perception of the team doesn’t spend much money. There’s always been maybe a little bit of bad perception from the players, but now you see how the team has changed and bringing in Bruce and showing that they are committed to being one of the top clubs.”
To be fair to Lleget, he certainly recognized that the Galaxy are a great organization, saying, “It wasn’t easy, the decision to leave a great club like the Galaxy. That’s never going to be easy.” Likewise, Gonzalez started his press conference by saying, “First and foremost, I want to thank Toronto for having me these past two and a half years and bringing me in to their organization.”
It’s also worth noting that both the Galaxy and TFC are in periods of transition. Greg Vanney has only been the Galaxy’s head coach for one season while Bob Bradley has just arrived in Tortono. Vanney is a talented coach and it’s very likely that he’ll get things right in the not-so-distant future. Bradley will almost certainly turn things around in Toronto.
For now, Revs fans should revel in the fact that players are coming to New England to lift championships. It’s especially significant that a Galaxy player came to the Revolution to win.